Today’s blog post features the latest exciting conservation developments in the tomb of Karakhamun.
The first one has enormous importance for the tomb of Karakhamun because it deals with the resurrection of Osiris in the burial chamber of the tomb. The painted figure of Osiris on the East wall of the chamber was considerably damaged. A few fragments of the figure, found in the debris and reinstated on the wall, gave it more presence and colour but the face remained blank and lifeless.
Our head epigrapher Miguel Molinero Polo and the Project’s conservation team spent years reconstructing different elements of the chamber’s decoration.
Even the tiniest fragments of painted plaster were carefully examined and taken into consideration. This season, Miguel Molinero and his student Andrea Rodriguez Valls doubled their efforts but none of their work could revive Osiris himself.
A small piece of whitish plaster and a few black lines drew the attention of our epigraphers. Fired up by the almost unrealistic thought that it could be the remains of the eye of Osiris, they hurried back to the burial chamber.
The last moments of hope and doubt were painful.
Yet the victory was complete and enormously satisfying. Not only was the scale of the fragment correct for the figure but the back of this piece of plaster fitted exactly into the depression on the wall. It was a truly magical moment as this could not have been expected on such a distorted wall.
Miguel and Andrea performed the ritual of the opening of the eye of Osiris. The whole team fells rejuvenated and ready for new amazing discoveries.